Archbishop Robert J. Carlson Names Consultant for Mission Advancement

News Release

December 14, 2009 For more information contact:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Anne Steffens
Chief Communications Officer
Phone: (314) 792-7631


ARCHBISHOP ROBERT J. CARLSON NAMES CONSULTANT FOR MISSION ADVANCEMENT

St. Louis –Daniel Conway has been appointed as Consultant to the Archbishop for the Archdiocese of Saint Louis, effective January 4, 2010.

A highly qualified professional, Dan brings 30 years of professional service to the Church as well as 20 years of consulting with Catholic organizations in the areas of strategic planning, communications, stewardship education, and development as chief stewardship and development officer for St. Meinrad Archabbey and Seminary, the Archdiocese of Louisville, the Archdiocese of Indianapolis, and the Archdiocese of Chicago. Additionally, he has taught in the International Catholic Stewardship Council's Institute for Stewardship and Development since l993, and writes a regular column on stewardship themes, The Good Steward, for diocesan newspapers and other publications. Dan has spent the last 10 years with RSI (now O'Meara, Ferguson, Whelan and Conway) as President and CEO of Mission Advancement Services.

Dan is recognized internationally as a teacher, writer and consultant in the field of Mission Advancement and is the author of several books on stewardship themes. His outstanding work has been recognized by the awarding of two recent awards: 2008 International Catholic Stewardship Council's Bishop William Connare Award for Distinguished Service to Dioceses and Parishes and 2009 Catholic Press Association Award for Best Editorial Writing.

A graduate of Saint Meinrad College, he earned a Master of Arts degree in Religious Studies from Indiana University and a Master of Religious Education from St. Meinrad School of Theology. Dan and his wife of 31 years, Sharon, have 5 children. They are active members in their current parish, Holy Trinity Church in Louisville, KY.

When asked about the need for a Consultant for Mission Advancement, Archbishop Robert J. Carlson stated, "We have excellent, experienced staff who know our Archdiocese very well--from the inside out in fact. What Mr. Conway adds to our team is 30 years of experience with many different dioceses throughout the United States. As Consultant for Mission Advancement, he can help us make sure we're taking advantage of best practices -- especially in the increasingly important of area of funding for Catholic schools."

In a statement from Mr. Conway he states, “More than 15 years ago, I had the privilege of working with Archbishop Rigali and a distinguished group of clergy and lay leaders who developed the Archdiocese's first Strategic Pastoral Plan. I discovered then what a wonderful local Church this is. It's a great pleasure for me to return to the Archdiocese of St. Louis and to assist Archbishop Carlson and the members of his ministry team in the challenging work of Mission Advancement. I have a lot to learn about the Church of St. Louis, and I'm going to need lots of help. Fortunately, my past experience here has convinced me that I will have many great teachers and lots of good help!"

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Catholics Celebrate Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe

News Release

December 11, 2009 For more information contact:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Anne Steffens
Chief Communications Officer
Phone: (314) 792-7631


CATHOLICS CELEBRATE FEAST OF OUR LADY OF GUADALUPE
CHILDREN DRESS UP AT PARISH NAMED AFTER FEAST DAY

WHAT: Hundreds of parishioners, especially Hispanic Catholics, celebrate the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe with costumes and a bi-lingual Mass

WHEN: Saturday, December 12, 2009 at 9AM

WHERE: Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church, 17 Hawkesbury in Ferguson

Ferguson, MO – As part of Advent, Catholics around the world celebrate the Feast Day of Our Lady of Guadalupe. At the parish named after the Feast Day, children will dress as those whom Catholics believe were participants in the miracle of Our Lady of Guadalupe.

The apparition of Our Lady of Guadalupe appeared in 1531 to Juan Diego, a Mexican Indian, at the Hill of Tepeyac. The appearance marks the beginning of the massive conversion to Christ and His Church of the native peoples of Mexico. Our Lady of Guadalupe continues to be a source of consolation and hope, not only to Catholics of Hispanic descent but to all people, especially those undergoing great trials.

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Saints Joachim & Ann Care Service Sponsors "Adopt a Family" Again this Year

News Release

December 11, 2009 For more information contact:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Anne Steffens
Chief Communications Officer
Phone: (314) 792-7631

SAINTS JOACHIM & ANN CARE SERVICE SPONSORS “ADOPT A FAMILY” AGAIN THIS YEAR
DESPITE CURRENT ECONOMIC CLIMATE, COMMUNITY AGENCY STRIVES TO PROVIDE FAMILIES WITH CHRISTMAS

What: Donors in the community provide Christmas dinner, financial donation, and gifts to families that couldn’t otherwise provide for themselves.

When: Media availability: 12 noon-2:00pm Sunday

Where: St. Charles Community College (4601 Mid Rivers Mall Drive Cottleville, 63376)

The Saints Joachim & Ann Care Service’s--a non-profit organization dedicated to serving those in crisis and the prevention of homelessness and hunger--Adopt A Family takes place this weekend at St. Charles Community College.

On Saturday, members of the community bring gifts to donate for those served by Sts. Joachim & Ann. On Sunday, the families in need come and pick up their food and gifts.

The project consists of over 400 volunteers and over 650 Families who have been adopted. Over 1,000 children will receive a bike, a pair of shoes, and lots of gifts and toys. Each family receives a Christmas meal, including fresh fruit and ham. All that is given to the families in need is donated by members of the community.

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Illinois Kindergartner Raises Money for St. Louis Catholic School

News Release

December 10, 2009 For more information contact:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Anne Steffens
Chief Communications Officer
Phone: (314) 792-7631

ILLINOIS KINDERGARTNER RAISES MONEY FOR ST. LOUIS CATHOLIC SCHOOL
SURPRISE AMOUNT WILL BE PRESENTED BY LITTLE GIRL TO OUR LADY OF GUADALUPE SCHOOL

WHAT: Mass and presentation of money raised and other surprises for students at Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic School

WHEN: Friday, December 11 at 8:30AM. Presentation is expected to begin after Mass (around 9:15AM

WHERE: Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church, 17 Hawkesbury Drive in Ferguson

Ferguson, MO – It started when five year old Sarah Ann Steibel of Prairie du Rocher, IL walked by a TV set and caught a glimpse of a news story about the 55th anniversary of Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church and a fundraiser for the school. Sarah told her mom, “Those kids look like me!” referring to the Catholic school uniform she also wears as a student of St. John the Baptist Catholic School in Red Bud. After watching the news story, she decided to collect nickels for 55 days (in honor of the 55th anniversary) and donate what she had raised to the Ferguson school. Her own school, her own community, and local businesses learned of her effort and also donated to the cause, both monetarily and with other gifts.

For the first time, Sarah Ann will visit Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic School and give to the students what she has collected. “She has always been a giver”, says her mother Nannie. “We believe this entire project is from God because of all the people who felt compelled to give so generously and to give to people they haven’t even met. It’s certainly one of the tenets of our Catholic faith – to help others.”

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Statement Regarding St. Sabina Catholic School

News Release

December 10, 2009 For more information contact:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Anne Steffens
Chief Communications Officer
Phone: (314) 792-7631

STATEMENT REGARDING ST. SABINA CATHOLIC SCHOOL
From Father Joseph Banden, Pastor of St. Sabina Parish

Since 1962, St. Sabina Catholic School has been part of the parish. Our mission at St. Sabina Catholic School has always been to provide a quality Catholic education to our children, but the changing demographics and declining enrollment have made it more difficult to provide that education at a reasonable cost.

Over the past year, I have met with parents, teachers, parishioners and administrators from the Catholic Education Office to talk about the future of St. Sabina Catholic School. We currently have 131 K-8 students enrolled at the school. To operate a school next year at the level of quality we expect, the parish subsidy will cost the parish $315,000 (which is at least 50% of the Sunday collections), which is in addition to what the school collects in tuition.

Early last month the School Board, the Finance Committee, and the Parish Council, all made up of parishioners, came to the conclusion that we could not continue to support the school at this level for the 2010-2011 school year. A committee of parents and parishioners had been formed to look at the possibilities of providing a quality Catholic education by contacting neighboring parishes about mergers or consolidations.

This past Monday, the committee made the recommendation to the parents and parishioners that St. Sabina Catholic School merges with St. Norbert Catholic School. That recommendation was met with a positive response from the parents. We will then take that recommendation before the Archdiocesan Board of Education, which will make its own recommendation to the Archbishop. The future of any Archdiocesan school rests in the hands of the Archbishop, but he relies heavily on the work of the local community and the board in the decision-making process.

The prospect of closing our school brings sadness to all the members of our parish community. The parish remains committed to providing a Catholic education to its children in other ways.

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St. Louis Catholics Begin the Season of Advent

News Release

November 27, 2009 For more information contact:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Anne Steffens
Chief Communications Officer
Phone: (314) 792-7631

ST. LOUIS CATHOLICS BEGIN THE SEASON OF ADVENT

WHAT: Father Daniel Choi will mark the beginning of the Advent season by celebrating Mass

WHEN: Sunday, November 29, 2009 at 9 AM

WHERE: St. Ambrose Catholic Church, 5130 Wilson in South St. Louis (The Hill)

St. Louis, MO – Catholics around the world gather this weekend to begin the season of Advent, during which they prepare for the coming of Christ.

One of the main symbols of Advent in the United States is the Advent wreath, a circular green wreath with three violet candles and one rose candle. The circular green wreath represents God’s unending love for us. The colors of the candles reflect the vestments the priests wear during the Advent season. Violet symbolizes royalty (the coming of the King) and rose (which may only be worn on the third Sunday) is a sign of anticipatory joy.

Advent stands in stark contrast to the general focus of materialism in the weeks preceding Christmas. The Advent season focuses on the historical coming of Christ at his birth in Bethlehem, and His glorious coming at the end of the world.

One candle is lit every Sunday, which shows Catholics that as the light increases, we are growing closer to God.

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Statement Regarding Protest Outside Cathedral Basilica

News Release

November 29, 2009 For more information contact:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Anne Steffens
Chief Communications Officer
Phone: (314) 792-7631

STATEMENT REGARDING PROTEST OUTSIDE CATHEDRAL BASILICA
From Archbishop Robert J. Carlson, Archbishop of St. Louis

“In June of this year, Archbishop Richard Malone of Portland, Maine sent a letter to all U.S. bishops asking for financial support for issues the church considers moral issues. I approved a donation for $10,000 which was charged to the special needs fund. This fund has traditionally been the Archbishop’s for discretionary spending, not for formal operations, and is funded by private gifts. These funds were already available when I arrived in St. Louis. Archbishops of St. Louis have made donations in the past to help other dioceses around the world for various causes ranging from disaster relief to pro-life issues.

The ballot measure asked voters if they wanted to reject the new law that allows same sex marriages and allows religious groups to refuse to perform these marriages. The voters in Maine supported this measure despite the fact that, according to the state of Maine, groups who believe in same sex marriage raised more than $5.2 million to defeat the amendment, while those who believe in the sanctity of marriage raised about $3.3 million.

The Catholic Church always tries to follow the teachings of Jesus in welcoming all people. The Church does not believe in discrimination. The Church was in the forefront of the Civil Rights movement in this country which sought to end racial discrimination. In the Archdiocese of St. Louis, we are currently the largest private funder of Doorways (www.doorwaysmo.org) an organization the late Archbishop John May help found in the 1980’s. Doorways provides affordable, secure housing and related supportive services to people living with HIV/AIDS. Another example of our support is the Courage/Encourage ministry, which is a worldwide ministry that has a chapter in the Archdiocese of St. Louis, and is made known to Catholics every week in the Archdiocesan publication, the St. Louis Review. This ministry works with homosexuals and their families.

Supporting homosexuals does not mean we can change Christ’s teaching on the nature of marriage. As recorded in the Bible, Jesus says a marriage is between a man and a woman. As Catholics, we believe marriage is a Sacrament, given to us by Christ and witnessed by a priest. We do not have the ability to change the Sacrament of marriage.
That being said, we do have the obligation as Catholics to carry out Christ’s teachings, whether in the privacy of our own home or in the public square. Separation of church and state means that the government cannot favor a particular faith. It does not mean that faith-filled people lose their right to speak out publicly and engage in the political process. In fact, the Catholic Church was in the forefront of the civil rights movement, and that was a political issue as well.

Following Christ’s teaching on marriage does not mean we neglect the poor. In fact, no other private institution in the world does as much for the sick and the poor as the Catholic Church. In the state of Missouri, Catholic Charities is the largest private provider for social services. In the Archdiocese of St. Louis, we spend millions of dollars helping the homeless through Catholic Charities (St. Patrick Center and Catholic Charities Housing Resource Center) and Father Dempsey’s Charities.

It’s not an either/or choice when it comes to Christ’s teachings. As Catholics, we are called to teach and live them all.”

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Archdiocese of St. Louis Celebrates the Gift of Adoption

News Release

November 20, 2009 For more information contact:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Anne Steffens
Chief Communications Officer
Phone: (314) 792-7631

ARCHDIOCESE OF ST. LOUIS CELEBRATES THE GIFT OF ADOPTION

WHAT: A Mass and special blessing for all persons involved with the adoption of children

WHEN: Sunday, November 22, 2009, at 10AM

WHERE: Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis, 4431 Lindell in the Central West End

St. Louis, MO – In observance of November as National Adoption Month, Bishop Robert J. Hermann, Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of St. Louis, will celebrate Mass to honor those who have placed a child for adoption or adopted a child, those who anticipate they might adopt, and those involved in foster care. “Adoption is a beautiful gift for all involved, and it requires a tremendous sacrifice for both the biological and adoptive families, so it’s important to show our support for their loving commitment to their children,” said Beth Lauver, Director of the Respect Life Apostolate. “The annual celebration of adoption is recognition of the gift of life that the Respect Life Apostolate and Good Shepherd Children and Family Services witness and encourage every day.”

According to the Missouri Department of Social Services, there are currently 545 children in foster care awaiting adoption in St. Louis City, St. Louis County, St. Charles County and Jefferson County. Last year, there were 233 adoptions of children in foster care in those same areas. The numbers do not include private adoptions of newborns and international adoptions.

The event is sponsored by the Respect Life Apostolate and Good Shepherd Children and Family Services, a Catholic Charities agency. Those interested in adopting can call Good Shepherd Children and Family Services at 314-854-5700.

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US Bishops Elect Archbishop Carlson to Oversee Committee on Clergy, Consecrated Life and Vocations

News Release

November 17, 2009 For more information contact:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Anne Steffens
Chief Communications Officer
Phone: (314) 792-7631

US BISHOPS ELECT ARCHBISHOP CARLSON TO OVERSEE COMMITTEE ON CLERGY, CONSECRATED LIFE AND VOCATIONS

ST. LOUIS – During their meeting in Baltimore, members of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops elected Archbishop Robert J. Carlson chairman of the Committee on Clergy, Consecrated Life and Vocations. Archbishop Carlson will spend the next year working with the current chairman, Cardinal Sean O’Malley, O.F.M. , Archbishop of Boston. “I’m delighted to be elected. I look forward to finding out what the committee has done already and working with Cardinal O’Malley to continue the good work he has already done”, said Archbishop Robert J. Carlson. “As the Archbishop of St. Louis, this position is a wonderful opportunity for me to work more closely with the religious orders in the St. Louis area.”

The Committee on Clergy, Consecrated Life and Vocations assists bishops across the United States in promoting, supporting and education about the Church’s pastoral needs and concerns for the priesthood, diaconate (deacons), and consecrated life (nuns and sisters), and in addressing the issues concerning the lives and ministries of bishops. The committee also develops foundations documents and appropriate resources that promote effective ministry of the clerical state, consecrated life and vocations.

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Archbishop Robert J. Carlson's Response Regarding Portland, Maine Donation

News Release

November 12, 2009 For more information contact:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Anne Steffens
Chief Communications Officer
Phone: (314) 792-7631

Archbishop Robert J. Carlson's Response Regarding Portland, Maine Donation

In June of this year, Archbishop Richard Malone of Portland, ME, sent a letter to all United States bishops asking for financial support.

Archbishop Robert J. Carlson approved a donation for $10,000 which was charged to the Special Needs fund. This fund has traditionally been the Archbishop's to be used for discretionary spending--not for normal operations--and is funded by private gifts. Archbishops of St. Louis have made donations in the past to help other dioceses around the world for various causes which the Church regards as moral issues, ranging from disaster relief to pro-life issues.

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Archbishop Carlson Celebrates Mass for Catholic School that Wins National Award

News Release

November 1, 2009 For more information contact:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Anne Steffens
Chief Communications Officer
Phone: (314) 792-7631

ARCHBISHOP CARLSON CELEBRATES MASS FOR CATHOLIC SCHOOL THAT WINS NATIONAL AWARD
Most Sacred Heart in Eureka is Named Blue Ribbon School, One of Two Private Schools in Missouri

WHAT: Archbishop Robert J. Carlson will celebrate an all school Mass with students to recognize the award given by the US Department of Education

WHEN: Wednesday, November 11, 2009 at 8:15AM

WHERE: Most Sacred Heart Catholic Church at 350 East Fourth Street in Eureka

St. Louis, MO – Most Sacred Heart Catholic School is one of only six Missouri schools, and one
of only two private schools in Missouri, to earn the national designation of being a 2009 No Child Left
Behind – Blue Ribbon School.
“We are thrilled with this award”, said Monica Wilson, principal of Most Sacred Heart School.
“It’s a credit to our students, our teachers and our parents.”
The Blue Ribbon Schools program honors public and private schools that are academically
superior or have shown dramatic improvement in student achievement to high levels, especially among
disadvantaged students. This year, the US Department of Education chose 314 schools nationwide. Since
1983, 16 Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of St. Louis have been designated Blue Ribbon Schools.
Most Sacred Heart School has 215 students in preschool through eighth grade.

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Local Catholics Celebrate All Saints and All Souls Days

News Release

November 1, 2009 For more information contact:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Anne Steffens
Chief Communications Officer
Phone: (314) 792-7631

LOCAL CATHOLICS CELEBRATE ALL SAINTS AND ALL SOULS DAYS
Children at Prayer Service Dress as Their Favorite Saint

WHAT: Prayer service to mark All Saints and All Souls Days

WHEN: Monday, November 2, 2009 at 7:10PM

WHERE: St. Michael Catholic Church, 7622 Sutherland in Shrewsbury

St. Louis, MO – Catholics around the world will celebrate All Saints Day on Sunday and All Souls Day on Monday. On All Saints Day, Catholics honor all those we believe are spending eternal life in Heaven. On All Souls Day, we pray for those loved ones who have died.

At St. Michael Catholic Church, students of the Parish School of Religion (Catholic instruction for children who attend public school) will join in prayer for the saints and others who have died. Close to a dozen first graders will dress as their favorite saints while eighth graders will describe the lives of those saints.

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